Sunday, April 19, 2015

Sweet and Spicy Pork Chops by Rachel

Growing up in an asian household, I had pork often.  Now that I'm making food choices for myself, I try not to indulge in too much pork just to keep my meals low fat and to give myself room for the desserts and baked goods that I love so much, but every now and then, I just want a nice pork chop.  Pork chops aren't always my first choice because if not cooked right, pork chops can be very dry.  I'm not the kind of girl that eats apple sauce with my pork chops so I need my pork chops to be sweet and juicy on their own.  What's the secret?

BRINING.  Brining means that you're marinating the meat in a salty solution overnight.  It traps in flavors into the pork chop and keeps the meat moist.  Know that if you want to make this recipe you will need at least a day because the pork needs to brine OVERNIGHT.

Ingredients for the Brine- Per Pork Chop (I bought two bone-in pork chops that were about 1/2 lb each)

1/4 cup water
1/4 cup dark brown sugar
2 tablespoons salt
1/2  teaspoon cayenne pepper
1/4 teaspoon ground ginger
1/2 teaspoon of ground black pepper
canola oil for cooking

Wednesday, January 28, 2015

My Favorite Pizza by Rachel

With all the snow that's hit New York, I haven't been able to get to my favorite pizza joint in NY- Paulie Gee's.  They are a great pizza joint in Greenpoint and they make wonderful neapolitan style pizzas.  Feeling the cabin fever come on, I decided to do some research about how to get that pizza at home.

I've always kind of stayed away from making breads because of the long wait times needed for bread doughs to rise properly.  Pizza dough research will tell you that the wait time is necessary.  And they're right.  You have to let it ferment overnight.  While there are quick-fix recipes out there, I found that almost all recipes called for overnight fermentation.  So I did that.

I don't have a pizza stone either so I was a little worried that I might not get that crust that I wanted, but I have a solution for you!  Let me take you on my pizza journey, starting with the ingredients:

Really, this is all you need.

For the pizza dough (makes two 12 inch pizzas)
2 cups bread flour
1/2 tsp yeast
1 teaspoon kosher salt
3/4 cup water

For toppings
1 can crushed tomatoes (you can buy whole peeled tomatoes, but you'll just end up crushing them yourself)
mozzarella, however much you want!  8 oz is probably enough, but if you want more, do it up!
fresh basil
any other toppings your heart desires!  My recommendations would be prosciutto, pepperoni, anchovies, or broccoli rabe.  All great choices- you can't go wrong.

Tuesday, January 27, 2015

Lemongrass Chicken and Ramen Noodles by Heather

I am so excited to share this recipe because it uses fresh ramen noodles I got from a friend whose grandma owns and runs a Chinese market in the Chinatown in Oakland.  They make their own noodles, and these are honestly the best ramen noodles I've ever had!  I also went to a ramen making class this past weekend, so I feel like I have a new appreciation for how complex the process is.

1 lb. boneless skinless chicken thighs
1/2 cup coconut milk (full fat)
1 stalk lemongrass, with core sliced finely
1/2 tsp. turmeric
1 tsp. kosher salt
1 tbs. ginger, roughly chopped
1 shallot roughly chopped
5 green onions, finely sliced
2 handfulls fresh ramen noodles
1/4 oyster sauce
1 tbsp. sesame oil
1 tbsp. soy sauce (or more to taste based on your preference)
Sriracha (add based on your preference)